April 2019 Update
The club membership management software industry is crazy. There is so much software and not enough time to trial them all before your new season starts. Many clubs stick with a system that they don't like because they're familiar with it and nothing better has come along. The interest we've had from US sports clubs already has been overwhelming and we're excited to be entering the US market with an already extremely successful product. We're ready to show clubs that their club admin can be done in a much easier way.
It can be such an effort to get your club set up within a piece of sports club management software. By the time everything is up and running, you never want to switch software again. This means you can end up putting up with extortionate pricing, less-than-helpful support, features that don’t work as well as you’d like, and you feel almost ‘trapped’.
When we speak to potential new users, one of the biggest initial barriers of switching software always tends to be the time and effort they think it will take to switch. This is where we step in and tell them switching software doesn’t have to be as stressful as their last experience. We try to take the pressure off in any way we can.
We thought it’d be a good idea to develop a guide so you know the exact process you need to take when switching software.
1. Check your current software provider contract
We don't tie our users into a contract. But some software providers do. Whether it be a 3/6/12/24 month contract, there are normally penalty fees for leaving early in this case. So just make sure that you check before you take the leap. You can look back at your original contract, or you can contact their Support team for more information.
2. Do your research
There is where you’d normally shop around on Google. Most users tend to use search terms such as ‘sports club management software’ or ‘football software’ etc.
It’s then a good idea to head to their website and check out some of their features to make sure they do what you need them to. The more research you do now, the less chance of subscribing to software that only half suits your needs.
3. Sign up for some free trials
Once you’ve narrowed your selection down, sign up to some free trials. You’ll be able to take a look around and get a feel for the features and how easy the software is to navigate around. Free trials can range from 7 to 30+ days. As this is the 'testing' period, it's a really good idea to take advantage of it.
4. Ask any questions you may have
Use this time to get to know your potential new Support team. Ask them any questions you may have or tell them your hesitations about switching. Discuss fees (not forgetting transaction fees).
A good Support team will want what’s best for you. They'll be open, honest and will help you make an informed decision about whether their software is a fit for your club. This will also give you a chance to gauge what their support response time is like and how satisfied you are with their responses.
5. Ask your current provider for an export of the data held in your account
Once you’ve decided on Coacha, it’s good to get your data uploaded during the free trial. This is so that you get chance to use the software during the trial. Depending on your previous software provider, you should be able to export your data. You should either be able to do this yourself, or get in touch with their Support, who will do it for you. This is usually provided in an Excel document including all of your member’s information.
6. Consider GDPR
Depending on your GDPR policy, you may need to think about what you’ll ask your previous software provider to do with your data now you’ve left.
7. Get your data into Coacha
There are 3 ways you can go about getting your data into Coacha:
I. Send us a copy of the spreadsheet from your previous supplier and your timetable. We’ll set your club up free of charge.
II. You put the data from your spreadsheet into our spreadsheet and upload using our mass-uploader. This uploads all members at once.
III. Use the club signup form. You generate a link which you can distribute to all members. This takes members to a signup form where they can input essential information. Once submitted, these go into Pending Members within Coacha for you to accept.
8. Set up the rest of your club
a. Organise your members into Member Groups
Using Member Groups allows you to quickly add specific members into classes/registers. You can also communicate with members depending on their group or team. Many users choose to organize their Member Groups into teams, ages or gradings. It’s entirely dependent on how your club runs. You can also create sub-groups. So for example a Member Group could be 'Under 15s' and the sub-groups within this group could be 'A Team' and 'B Team'.
b. Set up your classes
Once your classes are set up and your Member Groups are assigned, your registers will automatically generate. Meaning when you log in, your registers will be there waiting, ready to use.
c. Link to Stripe and take payments
You’ll need to link an existing Stripe account to Coacha or make a new account. Then you can set up your recurring weekly/monthly/yearly subscriptions and takeone-off payments. You can do this there and then, or send payment requests to member/NOK emails.
d. Set up Coach logins
Now it’s time to give your coaches access. They will only have access to Members, Classes and Registers. So you don’t need to worry about them having full access to all features such as finances.
e. Set up Member logins
If you’d like to give your Members access to the Member Portal (for features such as GDPR, bookable classes etc.), then you’ll need to set up their login details or request that they do this themselves.
And then you should be ready to go! Remember that our Support office is open Monday – Friday 9am-5pm and we are always happy to help. Also remember that there's no such thing as a ‘stupid question’ because things are only easy when you know how!
We do our absolute best to support our users, no matter at which point of their Coacha journey they're in. Please let us know if you have any queries or there is anything at all we can help with.